Harkness Fellowship

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The Harkness Fellowships (previously known as the Commonwealth Fund Fellowships) are a programme run by the Commonwealth Fund of New York City. They were established to reciprocate the Rhodes Scholarships[1] and enable Fellows from several countries to spend time studying in the United States. The many notable alumni listed below include the president of the International Court of Justice; former Chairman and CEO of Salomon Brothers; a former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cambridge; the controller of BBC Radio 4; the editor of the Sunday Times; former directors of the Medical Research Council, the London School of Economics and the General Medical Council; and, a vice-president of Microsoft.

History[edit]

The Commonwealth Fund is a philanthropic foundation established in the United States by Anna Harkness in 1918. Her son, Edward Stephen Harkness, initiated the Commonwealth Fund Fellowships in 1925. These were intended to reciprocate the Rhodes Scholarships by enabling British graduates to study in the United States. In 1927 the scheme was widened by the creation of Dominion Fellowships available to graduates from universities in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and South Africa. In 1929 a further category of Dominion Civil Service Fellowships was established. The awards were tenable from nine to fifteen months and candidates were to be under the age of 40.

In 1961 the Fellowships were renamed the Harkness Fellowships. In addition to the Civil Service Fellowships, a new category of General Fellowships was set up, open to people in the fields of business, banking, politics, creative arts and journalism. The maximum tenure period was extended to 21 months.

Since June 1997, the activities of the Harkness Fellowships have been limited to the field of health care. The Fellowships are now considered one of the most prestigious award programs in health policy,[2] and accept Fellows from Australia, Canada (known as Harkness Associates), Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway (as of 2009), Switzerland (as of 2009) and the United Kingdom. They are tenable for twelve months.

Current Fellowship programme[edit]

Harkness Fellows in Health Care Policy & Practice spend a year conducting research at American institutions such as Harvard University, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Columbia University, Stanford University, Johns Hopkins University, Kaiser Permanente, or the Veterans Health Administration. They gain an in-depth understanding of the U.S. health care system and policy challenges, enhance their research skills, and develop contacts and opportunities for ongoing international collaboration.

In addition, Fellows attend a programme of seminars during the year:

  • September: Orientation and Qualitative Research Methodology Workshop
  • November: International Symposium on Healthcare Policy, bringing together Health Ministers from Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States
  • February: Washington Policy Briefing held on Capitol Hill with members of the United States Congress and senior government officials
  • May: Canadian Policy Briefing on Federal and provincial health
  • June: Final Reporting Seminar and the AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting

Administration and funding[edit]

The programme is funded and administered by the Commonwealth Fund of New York City, with additional support for some Fellows coming from external bodies,[3] namely:

Notable alumni[edit]

See also[edit]

References and notes[edit]

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External links[edit]